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Downtown + Neighborhoods

Find out what makes downtown Tacoma and the neighborhood business districts popular places to locate a business.

Downtown Tacoma
Downtown Tacoma has an eclectic mix of museums, unique shops, professional service firms and fine restaurants. It’s a perfect place to consider locating a business, especially if you want to reach the roughly 40,000 people who work downtown on a regular basis. Professionals mix with students in this urban pocket of the city that includes the University of Washington Tacoma campus, as well as the Tacoma School of the Arts established in 2001. With UW Tacoma on one end and the Broadway Center for the Performing Arts on the other, walking through downtown is a true urban experience. The Tacoma Link Light Rail also offers free rides through the downtown core so you can be sure to see its diverse offerings. You can visit a mix of unique shops or have lunch at one of the many  ethnic restaurants. Other great places to spend a few hours are the Tacoma Art Museum, Washington State History Museum, Foss Waterway Seaport Museum and the newly expanded Children’s Museum of Tacoma. For more about the benefits of locating downtown, visit the Downtown Tacoma website.

Tacoma Neighborhoods Business Districts
Each of Tacoma’s fifteen neighborhoods business districts has its own unique and distinct flavor. You can easily satisfy your craving for ethnic food, drop off your dry cleaning or grab a latte at one of many neighborhood eateries. Locals like to say, if you’ve seen one neighborhood business district, you haven’t seen them all! For a comprehensive overview of each business district, check out the links below.

Tacoma Neighborhood Business District Map

6th Avenue Business District
Located between Sprague and Proctor on 6th Avenue, eclectic truly defines this district with cafes, doggie daycare, record stores, a lumber yard and tattoo parlors. The Ave is a hot spot at night with local clubs and a wide array of fine dining choices. It’s an area you don’t want to miss day or night. Click here for a full profile of the 6th Avenue Business District (pdf).


Dome Business District
A diverse mix of commercial buildings and major transit centers, come to the Dome District to buy a book, browse antiques and so much more. You’ll find the Tacoma Dome, LeMay Car Museum and Tacoma’s well-known “Freighthouse Square”. Click here for a full profile of the Dome Business District (pdf).




Fern Hill Business District
Located at South 84th and Park Streets is Fern Hill, one of Tacoma’s oldest neighborhoods and site of its first trolley line. This district brings old world flavor to the surrounding neighborhood with historic walking tours, great retail and loads of charm. Click here for a full profile of the Fern Hill Business District (pdf).



Hilltop Business District
Just above downtown is the Hilltop, a quick and convenient spot to pick up a gift, box of chocolates or drug store item. You can also grab a bite for lunch with choices ranging from traditional southern barbecue to hot bowls of Vietnamese noodle soup. This neighborhood is one of the oldest residential areas in Tacoma. Click here for a full profile of the Hilltop Business District (pdf).



Lincoln Business District
Centered at South 38th Street and Yakima Avenue, the Lincoln district is a pleasing mix of long time family-owned businesses such as Lincoln Hardware and Lincoln Pharmacy, alongside an international flavor with the TET Vietnamese New Year Festival, international cuisine and gifts. The district is bordered by beautiful Lincoln Park and historic Lincoln High School. Click here for a full profile of the Lincoln Business District (pdf).


McKinley Hill Business District

McKinley Hill is located above the Tacoma Dome and Interstate 5 on McKinley Avenue at East 34th Street. It’s home to quaint shops, hip bars, historic buildings and some of the best views of Commencement Bay. Click here for a full profile of the McKinley Hill Business District (pdf).




Oakland Madrona Business District
Stretching along Center Street, Oakland Madrona has stayed true to its lumber mill history and is a one-stop shopping area for your home improvement needs. Big boxes and small family-owned shops are a few examples, but you can also stop at the local chiropractor, take care of your dog at its very own dog boutique and bring home flowers to mom from Grassi’s Florists. Click here for a full profile of the Oakland Madrona Business District (pdf).



Old Town Business District
Known as the birthplace of Tacoma, it’s no wonder that pioneer Job Carr decided to build his original log cabin in present-day Old Town Park, with its peaceful setting and spectacular views of Commencement Bay. The original charm of Old Town persists among local merchants who can meet your needs for flowers, jewelry and unique gifts. There is a host of dining experiences to choose from, including Tacoma’s oldest operating saloon, The Spar, to seafood restaurants along the waterfront. Click here for a full profile of the Old Town Business District (pdf).


Pacific Avenue Business District
A culturally diverse neighborhood, Pacific Avenue is full of colorful buildings housing a variety of ethnic grocery stores and restaurants. Visit your dentist or veterinarian, stop by the library, fill a prescription or enjoy a meal. Their annual Pacific Avenue Spring Festival invites neighbors and residents to meet local artists, sample delicious foods, see classic cars and meet new friends. Click here for a full profile of the Pacific Avenue Business District (pdf).



Portland Avenue Business District
An emerging neighborhood business area, the district is located on Portland Avenue from Interstate 5 to East 44th Street. Partnerships with the Puyallup Tribe are bringing Native American art to the district and the Portland Avenue Community Center. The Portland Avenue Park provides wonderful open space and recreational opportunities for Tacoma residents. Click here for a full profile of the Portland Avenue Business District (pdf).



Proctor Business District
At North 26th and Proctor Streets you’ll find the center of Tacoma’s North End neighborhood. One of the first established business districts, Proctor is known for its quality retail, family friendliness, and great restaurants. Large upscale grocers serve as the anchor tenants to a locally grown mix of quality retail and restaurants. Check out the Proctor Farmers’ Market held each Saturday morning from March through November. Click here for a full profile of the Proctor Business District (pdf).



Ruston Pt. Defiance Business District
Nestled at the entrance to Point Defiance Park, the Ruston Pt. Defiance shopping area is the only one located within two municipalities, Tacoma and Ruston. Situated along North Pearl Street, you’ll feel right at home on either side of the street! Click here for a full profile of the Ruston Pt. Defiance Business District (pdf).




South Tacoma Business District
South Tacoma is a historic shopping area that’s been serving Tacoma’s needs for generations. You can find almost any type of merchandise or service along South Tacoma Way from South 47th to South 57th Streets, including printing, home security, dance lessons and family restaurants. This district is regionally famous for its auto row and specialty automotive shops. Pay homage to the car with the annual South Tacoma Classic Car Show in August. Click here for a full profile of the South Tacoma Business District (pdf).



Stadium Business District
Located just north of downtown, the Stadium District is located on the edge of the historic North End neighborhood. It’s home to the incredible architecture of Stadium High School and the beauty of Wright Park and the Seymour Botanical Conservatory. Ranko’s Pharmacy, the Harvester, Ball Automotive, and Stadium Thriftway are longtime neighborhood businesses that have been serving customers with quality service for decades. Click here for a full profile of the Stadium Business District (pdf).



Tacoma Narrows Business District
The western gateway to Tacoma, Tacoma Narrows offers breathtaking views of the Narrows passage. This district gives you convenience—grab a drive-through mocha or enjoy a wine tasting before seeing a play at the Tacoma Musical Playhouse. Click here for a full profile of the Tacoma Narrows Business District (pdf).